Top 10 Reasons to Homeschool High Schoolers
Written by Tasha Swearingen
Homeschooling through the high school years may seem like an intimidating task, but it doesn’t have to be. Sure, there are more records to start keeping track of and, eventually, more people will be watching what you’re doing (on transcripts, for instance). But you can do it and there are good reasons to do so. Here are just a some of those reasons:
1 – Avoiding peer pressure. Peer pressure is bad, but it’s probably the worst in the teen years when kids are at an age where they’re beginning to question things in life. The last thing they need are well-meaning peers answering life’s questions and pushing them into things they know they shouldn’t be doing. Homeschooling allows you to avoid having kids around people you don’t choose to have them around.
2 – The ability to choose a college prep program. Not all public or private high schools offer college prep courses, such as AP or IB classes, or the ability to dual enroll while in high school. As a homeschooling family, you have the option to choose which college-prep path you’d like your child to go down, if the child agrees and understands the benefits of such a path. You’re not limited just by what the school offers (or doesn’t) because you can choose your own course of education.
3 – Forming lasting bonds with your teens. Just as this is a time when teens start questioning things, it’s also a time when they need their parents the most. This is hard to establish when they’re away from you for 7-9 hours a day and spend their off time with friends. Homeschooled families get to be together all day every day, and you can certainly make the most of this time by bonding with your child.
4 – Early graduation (if that’s your goal). Instead of having to wait until it’s “time” or being forced into only completing one English/math/science/etc. credit each year, homeschooled students can complete multiple credits in a single school year, allowing them to graduate early if that’s the goal. Some families decide early on that all children will graduate at 16 and they stick to it because they’re able to squeeze in multiple credits in one school year for a few years.
5 – More time to devote to interests. Without the requirements of doing as many as seven or eight classes each day (plus the obligatory homework that comes with it), your teen child has more time to devote to other interests that will serve her well in her post-graduate years. Also, the homeschooled high schooler has time to get a jump start on the path she’s after. For instance, a child interested in becoming a midwife might start out working as a doula at 15 or 16 years of age because she has the time to pursue this.
6 – Earn extra volunteer hours. Besides the fact that homeschooled teens are available to volunteer during the weekday daytime hours, they’re also usually available to perform volunteer hours beyond requirements for specific scholarships.
7 – It’s less stressful – on them and you. With everything involved in teaching a high school student, it’d be even more stressful if you were just “on the sidelines” watching as your child flounders around trying to make sense of what she’s told during school hours.
8 – It’s safer. Without the threats of bullies and weapons around campus, homeschooling is far safer for your teenager than attending school. Homeschooled students can focus entirely on academics without concern for their personal safety.
9 – Enhance sibling relationships. Though there may be days they argue atrociously with each other, the truth is being around each other helps strengthen sibling relationships. Schools would have them split up all day according to age groups but homeschooling keeps them together more often, which means they’re able to work through arguments and bond more.
10 – More career options. Whether your child is heading to college or would like to start a business of his or her own, homeschooling affords the opportunity to do both. A college-bound high school student can prepare for the SATs, ACT, and any other standardized testing with more time on her hands than a public schooled child.